Thursday, October 25, 2018

Matcha green tea kills breast cancer stem cells



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MATCHA, the Green Tea packed with antioxidants, is often hailed as containing properties which prevent disease.
Scientists in Salford, UK have shed a ray of light on the claim by testing it on cancer stem cells - with surprising results.
In research published in the journal Aging, a team from the Biomedical Research Centre at the University of Salford, used metabolic phenotyping on cell lines of breast cancer stem cells and found that Matcha "shifted cancer cells towards a quiescent metabolic state" and stopped their spread at a relatively low concentration (0.2 mg/ml).
They also found that the signaling pathways that promote cancer stem cells indicated that Matcha "strongly affected mTOR signals, weakening components of the 40S ribosome. This raised the possibility that Matcha could be used in place of chemical drugs such as rapamycin.
Michael Lisanti, professor of translational medicine at the center, explained: "Matcha green tea is a natural product used as a dietary supplement with great potential for a range of treatments. But, the molecular mechanism underpinning all that remains largely unknown.
"By using metabolic phenotyping, we found that the tea is suppressing oxidative mitochondrial metabolism - in other words it is preventing the cells from 're-fuelling' and therefore they become inactive and die.
"The effects on human breast cancer cells were very striking; the active ingredients in matcha having a surgical effect in knocking out certain signaling pathways.
"Our results are consistent with the idea that Matcha may have significant therapeutic potential, mediating the metabolic reprogramming of cancer cells."
The team who specialize in identifying non-toxic methods of killing cancer stem cells recently found that Earl Grey tea ingredient, Bergamot kills cancer cells and works as an anti-cholesterol agent.
Ref : https://www.salford.ac.uk/news/articles/2018/green-tea-prevent-cancer-cells-from-refuelling


Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Drug used to treat myelofibrosis can awaken ‘dormant’ lymphomas in the bone marrow

"Using bone marrow biopsies taken right at the start of the disease, we were able to show that primordia of lymphoma were present in the form of a B-cell clone," explain Heinz Gisslinger and Ulrich Jäger from the Division of Hematology/Hemostatsology of MedUni Vienna's Department of Medicine I. 16% of myelofibrosis patients were found to have dormant aggressive lymphoma. In approximately 6% of these patients, it then erupts when stimulated by the administration of JAK2 inhibitors.
According to the hematologist, it is possible to detect dormant lymphomas, if they are actively sought using sensitive, molecular biological techniques. "This is therefore the best predictive tool. It enables us to filter out the relevant 16%, categorize them and identify them as high-risk patients prior to treatment with JAK2 inhibitors."
The findings of the hematologists working with MedUni Vienna's Division of Medical-Chemical Laboratory Diagnostics and Clinical Pathology were substantiated by researchers at Vetmeduni Vienna, led by Veronika Sexl. They demonstrated in a mouse model that mice who have had bone marrow transplants likewise developed lymphomas. Says Jäger: "The findings from Vetmeduni Vienna fitted together with ours like a piece of a jigsaw puzzle." Moreover, two individual cases from Paris, from international collaborative partner Hôpital Saint-Louis, backed up the conclusions of the Vienna study, which has now been published in the prestigious journal "Blood", where it was also featured in the editorial.
"This multilateral collaboration is a perfect example of how open the research landscape has generally become and how important the reciprocal exchange of data is in medicine," says Jäger. This is also the direction taken by the next step of this project: a start is already being made on collecting international cases and associated data, in order to further enhance drug safety, and researchers are working closely with the pharmaceutical companies who produce these standard drugs. "Our findings represent a paradigm shift and improve the safety of this class of drugs," emphasize Sexl and Jäger.
"I am delighted by the quick, efficient and groundbreaking bridge between the mouse model and the clinical findings that we have succeeded in forming in this case. The basic research, preclinical and clinical work have all fitted together perfectly," adds Sexl.
Ref : https://www.meduniwien.ac.at/web/en/about-us/news/detailsite/2018/news-im-juni-2018/standard-myelofibrosis-drug-can-awaken-dormant-lymphoma/

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Eating plant-based diet can reduce risk for heart problems in people with type 2 diabetes

Plant-based diets improve glycemic control, lead to weight loss, and improve cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes, according to a new review published in the journal Clinical Nutrition.
Researchers reviewed nine randomized controlled trials that assessed the effectiveness of vegan and vegetarian diets for diabetes patients. The results show that those who ate a plant-based diet lowered their cholesterol, lost weight, lowered HbA1c levels, and improved other cardiometabolic risk factors when compared to those who ate a nonvegetarian diet.
More than 100 million Americans currently have diabetes or prediabetes. Those with diabetes are two to four times more likely to die from cardiovascular disease than those who do not have diabetes.
"The link between diabetes and cardiovascular disease is strong. Sixty to seventy percent of people who have type 2 diabetes die of heart disease," says study co-author Hana Kahleova, M.D., Ph.D., director of clinical research at the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. "The good news is that this study shows that the same simple prescription--eating a plant-based diet--can reduce our risk for heart problems and improve type 2 diabetes at the same time."
The study authors suggest that plant-based diets, which center on fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes, benefit both glycemic control and cardiovascular health, because they are low in saturated fat, rich in phytochemicals, high in fiber, and often rich in low-glycemic fruits and vegetables.
Previous controlled trials and prospective cohort studies have shown that a plant-based dietary pattern is associated with a lower risk of coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity, hypertension, cardiovascular mortality, and all-cause mortality.
Ref : https://www.elsevier.com/books/vegetarian-and-plant-based-diets-in-health-and-disease-prevention/mariotti/978-0-12-803968-7#

Friday, September 21, 2018

FDA Approves Mircera for Anemia Associated with Chronic Kidney Disease in Pediatric Patients on Dialysis






Food and Drug Administration approved methoxy polyethylene glycol-epoetin beta (Mircera, Vifor Pharma Inc.) for the treatment of pediatric patients 5 to 17 years of age on hemodialysis who are converting from another ESA after their hemoglobin level was stabilized with an ESA.

Approval was based on data from an open-label, multiple dose, multicenter, dose-finding trial (NCT00717366) in 64 pediatric patients (ages 5 to 17 years) with CKD on hemodialysis and had stable hemoglobin (Hb) levels while previously receiving another ESA (epoetin alfa/beta or darbepoetin alfa). Patients were administered Mircera intravenously once every 4 weeks for 20 weeks. After the first administration of Mircera, dosage adjustments were permitted to maintain target Hb levels.
Efficacy was based on maintaining Hb levels within target levels in the above clinical trial, and also from extrapolation from trials of Mircera in adult patients with CKD. The safety findings observed in pediatric patients were consistent with those previously reported in adults.
For conversion from another ESA, Mircera is dosed intravenously once every 4 weeks based on total weekly epoetin alfa or darbepoetin alfa dose at time of conversion. Full prescribing information is available at Mircera PI.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

FDA approves combination of Venclexta and Rituxan for lymphocytic leukemia treatment



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Venclexta® (venetoclax)                                           Rituxan® (rituximab)     

In continuation of my update on Venclexta® (venetoclax)  and Rituxan® (rituximab)


Genentech, a member of the Roche Group, announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Venclexta® (venetoclax) in combination with Rituxan® (rituximab) for the treatment of people with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) or small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL), with or without 17p deletion, who have received at least one prior therapy. Venclexta is being developed by AbbVie and Genentech, a member of the Roche Group. It is jointly commercialized by the companies in the United States and commercialized by AbbVie outside of the United States.

"We are pleased that this approval makes Venclexta, a first of its kind targeted therapy, available for more people with chronic lymphocytic leukemia whose disease has returned after previous treatment," said Sandra Horning, M.D., chief medical officer and head of Global Product Development. "Venclexta plus Rituxan provides a new chemotherapy-free option shown to help people live longer without their disease progressing compared to a standard-of-care therapy."
The approval of Venclexta plus Rituxan for people with previously treated CLL is primarily based on the results of the Phase III MURANO study, which were published online in the New England Journal of Medicine in March 2018 and presented at the American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting in December 2017. The results showed that a fixed duration of treatment with Venclexta plus Rituxan significantly reduced the risk of disease progression or death (progression-free survival; PFS) by 81 percent compared with bendamustine plus Rituxan, a current standard of care (HR=0.19; 95 percent CI 0.13-0.28; p<0.0001).
The most common side effects of Venclexta in combination with Rituxan include low white blood cell count, diarrhea, upper respiratory tract infection, cough, fatigue and nausea.
Today's FDA approval converts Venclexta's accelerated approval to a full approval. The FDA has also updated the indication for Venclexta as a single agent, which is now approved for the treatment of people with CLL or SLL, with or without 17p deletion, who have received at least one prior therapy. Venclexta was previously granted accelerated approval in April 2016 as a single agent for the treatment of people with CLL with 17p deletion, as detected by an FDA approved test, who have received at least one prior therapy.
The supplemental New Drug Application (sNDA) based on the MURANO data was granted Priority Review, a designation given to medicines that the FDA has determined to have the potential to provide significant improvements in the treatment, prevention or diagnosis of a disease. The FDA also previously granted Breakthrough Therapy Designation for Venclexta in combination with Rituxan for the treatment of relapsed or refractory CLL. Venclexta in combination with Rituxan is recommended in the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) guidelines as a treatment option for previously treated CLL (Category 1, Preferred).
An application for a variation of the marketing authorization based on the MURANO data has also been submitted to and validated by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). Additional submissions of the MURANO data to health authorities around the world are ongoing.
https://www.gene.com/media/press-releases/14728/2018-06-08/genentech-announces-fda-approval-for-ven

FDA approves combination of Venclexta and Rituxan for lymphocytic leukemia treatment

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Infant Omega-3 Supplementation Tied to Decreased Waist Size



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In continuation of my update on Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 LCPUFA) supplementation in infancy is associated with reduced insulin concentrations and insulin resistance in boys and reduced waist circumference in both sexes at age 5 years, according to a study published online June8 in Pediatrics.
Valene H.L. See, Ph.D., from the Royal Perth Hospital in Australia, and colleagues randomly assigned 420 infants to a daily supplement of n-3 LCPUFA or olive oil (control) from birth to 6 months. Growth, body composition, and cardiometabolic risk factors were evaluated at 5 years of age.
The researchers found that infants who received n-3 LCPUFA had a smaller waist circumference at 5 years (coefficient, 1.1 cm), which remained significant after adjusting for confounders (coefficient, 0.8 cm). Boys who received n-3 LCPUFA supplementation had a 21 percent reduction in insulin concentrations and a 22 percent reduction in insulin resistance versus the control group. At birth, 2.5 years, and 5 years, there were no other differences in growth and cardiometabolic risk factors between the groups.
"Longer-term follow-up of the cohort is warranted to determine whether these differences are maintained into adolescence," write the authors

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Infant Omega-3 Supplementation Tied to Decreased Waist Size..



Image result for Omega-3 Supplementation
In continuation of my update on Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 LCPUFA) supplementation in infancy is associated with reduced insulin concentrations and insulin resistance in boys and reduced waist circumference in both sexes at age 5 years, according to a study published online June8 in Pediatrics.
Valene H.L. See, Ph.D., from the Royal Perth Hospital in Australia, and colleagues randomly assigned 420 infants to a daily supplement of n-3 LCPUFA or olive oil (control) from birth to 6 months. Growth, body composition, and cardiometabolic risk factors were evaluated at 5 years of age.
The researchers found that infants who received n-3 LCPUFA had a smaller waist circumference at 5 years (coefficient, 1.1 cm), which remained significant after adjusting for confounders (coefficient, 0.8 cm). Boys who received n-3 LCPUFA supplementation had a 21 percent reduction in insulin concentrations and a 22 percent reduction in insulin resistance versus the control group. At birth, 2.5 years, and 5 years, there were no other differences in growth and cardiometabolic risk factors between the groups.
"Longer-term follow-up of the cohort is warranted to determine whether these differences are maintained into adolescence," write the authors

Friday, September 14, 2018

Topical Rapamycin Effective for TSC-Related Facial Angiofibromas

In continuation of my  update on Rapamycin
Topical rapamycin seems effective for tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC)-related facial angiofibromas, according to a study published online May 23 in JAMA Dermatology.
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Mary Kay Koenig, M.D., from The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, and colleagues examined the efficacy and safety of topical rapamycin for TSC-related facial angiofibromas in a study involving 179 patients. Participants were randomized in a 1:1:1 ratio to topical formulation containing 1 percent rapamycin, 0.1 percent rapamycin, or vehicle alone (59, 63, and 57 patients, respectively). The formulation was applied daily to designated areas at bedtime.
The researchers observed clinically meaningful and statistically significant improvement in facial angiofibromas for 1 and 0.1 percent rapamycin versus vehicle only, and for 1 versus 0.1 percent rapamycin; most of the improvement was seen in the first month. The Angiofibroma Grading Scale mean improvement at six months was 16.7, 11.0, and 2.1 points for 1 and 0.1 percent rapamycin and vehicle only, respectively (P < 0.001 for 1 and 0.1 percent versus vehicle only). End-of-treatment photos were rated better than baseline for 81.8, 65.5, and 25.5 percent of patients in the 1 and 0.1 percent rapamycin groups and the vehicle group, respectively (P < 0.001 for all three pairwise comparisons).
"Topical rapamycin appears effective and safe for treatment of TSC-related facial angiofibromas," the authors write. "In this trial, the preferred dose was 1 percent once daily."
Several authors disclosed financial ties to Novartis; one author disclosed ties to MedStudy. Several authors have a provisional patent pending
Ref : https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamadermatology/article-abstract/2682034?resultClick=1

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Eating raspberries improves function of cells lining blood vessels, research shows



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In continuation of my update on Raspberry
New research led by Dr Ana Rodriguez-Mateos, School of Life Course Sciences, shows that eating red raspberries improves the function of the cells that line blood vessels.
Endothelial cells form the interior lining of our blood and lymphatic vessels. They act as a barrier between the blood or lymph and the surrounding body tissue as well as playing key roles in blood clotting and regulating blood pressure amongst other things. Sometimes these cells stop working efficiently (called endothelial dysfunction) which is thought to be a significant factor in the development of cardiovascular disease.
Dr Rodriguez-Mateos and her colleagues studied ten, healthy male volunteers aged 18-35 years. Participants were randomly given drinks containing no, 200g or 400g of raspberries. Researchers monitored chemicals in their blood and urine as well as their blood pressure and flow-mediated dilation (FMD) of the brachial artery: a measure of how the artery widens when blood flow increases.
The results showed a significant increase in FMD for participants that drank raspberry-containing drinks. The effect lasted for at least 24 hours and there was also a correlating increase in the levels of urolithin metabolites found in their blood. These are produced by bacteria in the gut as ellagitannins, a chemical found in raspberries, are digested. Researchers believe that ellagitannins could therefore be beneficial to vascular health.
If the change in FMD seen could be sustained for long enough, it would reduce a person's risk of developing cardiovascular disease by up to 15%. Further studies are needed to establish whether these results translate into long-term health benefits in the general population and whether red raspberries and other foods rich in ellagitannins (such as strawberries, pomegranate or nuts) should be included as part of a healthy diet to help prevent cardiovascular disease.
Speaking of the findings Dr Rodriguez-Mateos said:
'Although more studies are needed to confirm our findings, we are very excited about the potential role of raspberries and ellagitannins in cardiovascular disease prevention. Following up on this study, we are now investigating the long-term benefits of ellagitannins in a larger group of healthy individuals and we are also looking at how our gut microbiota may have an impact on their health benefits.
More : https://www.kcl.ac.uk/lsm/schools/life-course-sciences/news-events/newsrecords/2018/could-eating-raspberries-prevent-cardiovascular-disease.aspx



Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Alnylam announces new positive results from Phase 1/2 study of lumasiran in patients with PH1

Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc., the leading RNAi therapeutics company, announced new positive results from its Phase 1/2 study with lumasiran, an investigational RNAi therapeutic targeting glycolate oxidase (GO) for the treatment of Primary Hyperoxaluria Type 1 (PH1). Results were presented at the OxalEurope, European Hyperoxaluria Consortium, taking place on June 8, 2018 in Naples, Italy.
Updated interim data were from Part B of the Phase 1/2 study and were as of the data cut-off date of March 29, 2018. Part B is a randomized (3:1 drug:placebo), single-blind, placebo-controlled evaluation of lumasiran in patients with PH1. Cohorts 1 and 2 received three monthly doses of lumasiran at 1 mg/kg or 3 mg/kg, respectively; Cohort 3 received two quarterly doses at 3 mg/kg. An additional eight patients received open-label lumasiran in expansions of each of the first two cohorts, totaling 20 patients enrolled. Patients randomized to the placebo group also received subsequent subcutaneous administration of lumasiran following administration of placebo. Patients had a mean age of 14.9 years (range: 6-43) and a mean estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) of 77 mL/min/1.73m2 (range: 42-131).
Lumasiran demonstrated a mean maximal reduction in urinary oxalate of 64 percent in patients enrolled in Cohorts 1-3 (N=12). All lumasiran-treated patients experienced a lowering in urinary oxalate below 0.7 mmol/24 hrs/1.73m2, a threshold level associated with a reduced rate of progression to end-stage renal disease. On day 85, patients receiving lumasiran (N=9) maintained a mean reduction in urinary oxalate of 63 percent (range: 49-73 percent). Alnylam believes the potent and durable reductions in urinary oxalate support a once quarterly, subcutaneous dose regimen. Further, these results continue to support the hypothesis that GO inhibition has the potential to reduce and possibly normalize levels of hepatic oxalate production, thus potentially halting PH1 disease progression. Dosing in Part B of the Phase 1/2 study is ongoing and eligible patients are transitioning into an open-label extension (OLE) study. The Company expects to present additional data from all cohorts as well as from the OLE study in late 2018.
"We are pleased to present data that signal hope to patients with PH1, an ultra-rare, life-threatening disease, with a profound unmet need. Given the encouraging results, we believe that lumasiran has the potential to alleviate the pathologic overproduction of oxalate, the metabolite that causes the severe, systemic manifestations of PH1. Furthermore, we believe these results validate our approach of targeting GO, a key liver enzyme involved in the excessive oxalate output in patients with PH1," said Pritesh J. Gandhi, PharmD., Vice President and General Manager, Lumasiran program at Alnylam. "Based upon our recent discussions with the FDA, we are on track to advance this program into Phase 3 development at mid-year, with the goal of bringing lumasiran to patients around the world as rapidly as possible."
"PH1 is an ultra-orphan disease, with a generally pediatric onset and an immediate need for an effective intervention. Today, patients with advanced disease have no choice but to undergo intensive dialysis and, ultimately, a dual liver/kidney transplant, with no other approved treatment alternatives in place," said Prof. Bernd Hoppe, M.D., Head of the Division of Pediatric Nephrology, Department of Pediatrics, University of Bonn, Germany and an investigator in the lumasiran study. "The data presented on lumasiran provide evidence for oxalate reduction, highlighting the potential of this investigational medicine as an innovative approach for the treatment of patients with PH1."
Lumasiran was generally well tolerated in all patients in the Phase 1/2 study (N=20). Fifteen (75 percent) of patients treated with lumasiran experienced an adverse event (AE); the majority of AEs were mild or moderate in severity and unrelated to study drug. AEs occurring in three or more patients included abdominal pain, headache, nasopharyngitis, pyrexia, and vomiting. Two patients reported injection site reactions, both of which were mild and transient. Two patients reported severe AEs; one patient had pyelonephritis during placebo dosing and one patient had a kidney stone with renal colic after lumasiran dosing. One patient receiving placebo and three patients receiving lumasiran reported serious adverse events (SAEs); none were assessed as related to study drug. The placebo patient experienced kidney stones and pyelonephritis. The lumasiran patients with SAEs included one patient with kidney stones, one patient with fever and abdominal pain, and one patient with gastroenteritis. Lumasiran has not been associated with any clinically significant adverse laboratory findings, and there were no study discontinuations due to AEs through the data cut-off date.
Alnylam recently announced alignment with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on a pivotal study design for lumasiran, including a primary endpoint at six months based on reduction of urinary oxalate, and a study size of approximately 25 patients with PH1. The Company has guided its intention to initiate the Phase 3 trial in mid-2018. Lumasiran has received Breakthrough Therapy Designation from the FDA and Priority Medicines (PRIME) designation from the European Medicines Agency (EMA).
Ref : http://investors.alnylam.com/news-releases/news-release-details/alnylam-reports-updated-positive-results-phase-12-study